Two Japanese car parts suppliers agreed to plead guilty during an investigation by the Justice Department in the U.S. for fixing prices on the automotive wiring market.
Yazaki Corp. and Denso Corp. will pay fines of $470 million and $78 million, respectively. Additionally, four executives of Yazaki which worked in the company’s U.S. offices are set to go to prison for up to two years for their involvement in the price fixing scheme which stretched from the U.S. to Japan and Europe.
A dozen companies on three continents were proved to be involved in the scheme, making this “the largest criminal investigation the Antitrust Division has ever pursued,” according to the authority.
A separate $200 million fine was given in the U.S.in November to Furukawa Electric Co. of Tokyo, while three executives of the company were also sentenced to prison. An investigation in Japan led to significant fines on other four suppliers this month.
The Japanese automakers that were indirectly involved, as their car parts were the object of the price fixing scheme, did not make any comments on whether their reputation could be affected.
According to the Justice Department, the scheme referred to parts to car makers like Toyota, Honda and Subaru between 2000 and 2010.